With Easter fast approaching and deadlines looming it can be hard to find time for everything. Although it may seem like there's still plenty of time to start looking for a career, bringing your CV into shape sooner rather than later will save you a lot of hassle. Get ahead of the game and start seriously thinking about career opportunities (if you haven't already!). At Essay Writing Service UK we have five mistakes you should banish from your CV to get you started on the search for a graduate career.
The first thing to look for is spelling and grammar errors. Employers are likely to notice these straight away and even the simplest of errors can damage your chances. This is particularly true if you are studying an English or language-based course, or seeking a career along that path.
Your computer's spellchecker isn't completely reliable so make sure you read the CV through again and again. Reading it aloud can help to pick up on grammar errors or anything that doesn't sound quite right. Clue up on these common spelling mistakes and check to see you aren't making them! Getting a friend to read through too is a good way of picking up on spelling issues you may have missed.
It's tricky to stand out from the competition but your CV is often the first impression you can give a potential employer so it needs to be good. Don't sell yourself short by using generic phrases. Employers will have seen certain phrases over and over again, so they are likely to lose interest. Strip back any clichés or any meaningless phrases such as ‘I am hardworking' and ask yourself so what? The thing about a CV is that it needs to take your past experiences and show how you have used certain skills to succeed. The following words are often overused, particularly in the opening statement:
It's also worth noting that you should only use words you are completely sure on the meaning of. Certain words may have a negative connotation or suggest ambiguity, which is the last thing you want!
Be specific when getting your experience and skills on paper. Waffling to fill space, exaggerating things or losing track of what's important are all warning signs to an employer. CVs, by rule, should be no longer than two pages. Whilst you want to get as much into that space as you can, scrutinise the details you include and remove any unnecessary information. Try not to repeat yourself either.
Many people are tricked into thinking that they can send off the same CV to every company. Although the covering letter is a chance to tailor your application to the company, you should also consider tweaking your CV for each job you apply to. If you mention certain skills, job roles or prospects in your CV, consider how relevant these are for each application. Ditch the one size fits all idea and show that you understand what the job role requires by drawing on specific strengths in your CV that are relevant.
Unless you're applying for a specifically creative role, it's best to stick with a relatively simple CV format. Although you can find a lot of creative CV examples online, employers usually just want something straightforward. Mixing up colours or fonts, adding images and – dare I say it – pasting in a photo of yourself, are major no-nos. Cut out the fancy formatting and most importantly make sure it is easy to read. Your name and contact details should be clear at the top, as the first thing an employer sees. Legibility is a big turn off to employers. If they can't read your CV, they won't even try.
Once you've edited, re-edited, and perfected your CV it's time to start looking for those jobs! TARGETjobs is a good place to head to for all the latest graduate opportunities. If you're struggling, get in touch with us at Essay Writing Service UK. Our blog has a wealth of university and career help too.